University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Johnson v. Lark JC-MO-0002
Docket / Court 71 C114 ( E.D. Mo. )
State/Territory Missouri
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Case Summary
Prisoners at the St. Louis City Jail in Missouri filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against representatives of the city in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. The plaintiffs, represented by the Legal Aid Society, alleged that their civil rights had ... read more >
Prisoners at the St. Louis City Jail in Missouri filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against representatives of the city in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. The plaintiffs, represented by the Legal Aid Society, alleged that their civil rights had been violated by inadequacies at the jail, including overcrowding, sanitation and living conditions, discipline and procedures for solitary confinement, rules for mail and visitation, inadequate medical care, food, corporal punishment of prisoners, and failure to return personal property.

On July 13, 1973, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri (Judge William Webster) granted injunctive relief to the prisoners, holding that use of solitary confinement did not constitute cruel and unusual punishment, but that confinement of three men in tiny two-man cells, the absence of recreational facilities, low quality of food services, inadequate ventilation, excessive corporal punishment of prisoners, and subjecting prisoners to disciplinary confinement without any grievance procedures violated the prisoners' constitutional rights. Johnson v. Lark, 365 F.Supp. 289 (E.D.Mis. 1973).

Kristen Sagar - 03/14/2006


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
General
Assault/abuse by staff
Classification / placement
Disciplinary procedures
Disciplinary segregation
Education
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Loss or damage to property
Mail
Personal injury
Recreation / Exercise
Sanitation / living conditions
Totality of conditions
Visiting
Medical/Mental Health
Medical care, general
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) St. Louis City Jail
Plaintiff Description all federal prisoners in the St. Louis City Jail
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration 1973 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies After Decision: Implementation of Judicial Decrees in Correctional Settings
Written: Oct. 01, 1977
By: M. Kay Harris & Dudley P. Spiller (Temple University)
Citation: (1977)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ]

Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Reported Opinion 07/13/1973 (365 F.Supp. 289) (E.D. Mo.)
JC-MO-0002-0001.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judges Webster, John Stanley (E.D. Wash.)
JC-MO-0002-0001
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Fishman, Phillip F. (Missouri)
JC-MO-0002-0001
Heiser, Walter (Missouri)
JC-MO-0002-0001
Defendant's Lawyers FitzGibbon, John J. (Missouri)
JC-MO-0002-0001
Funsch, Richard O. (Missouri)
JC-MO-0002-0001
Koehr, Jack L. (Missouri)
JC-MO-0002-0001
Other Lawyers None on record

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